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Student
Title
Supervisor
Faculty
Educational Programme
Final Grade
Year of Graduation
Kseniya Khristosova
ROAD in Typological Perspective
2019
It has long been understood that the concept of ROAD (a line that serves for some object to be transferred from one point to another) is one of the key ones in human cognition. It has been actively discussed in several areas of study, such as philology, anthropology and culturology. It attracts the attention of linguists as well, since it is closely related to an even more basic concept of motion. The lexemes that belong to this semantic field frequently develop a big polysemy through metonymic and metaphorical shifts. However, there are little works comparing how the means of lexicalizing this concept alternate from one language to another.

The present work examines the synonymic group ROAD in Russian, English, French, Italian and Mongolian languages to describe its lexemes, their etymology, compatibility and polysemy. This set of languages includes closely related ones (French and Italian) as well as a non-Indo-European one (Mongolian), which are two particularly interesting cases to consider in typological perspective. The approach was to study the lexemes that belong to the synonymic group using dictionaries and online corpora. The analysis of the contexts and argument structure of predicate words determines which parameters are salient for lexicalization in various languages. Then, the structure of the semantic field is visualized through building a semantic map based on a set of sub-meanings, which demonstrates the most common combination strategies.

The outcomes of this research help us learn more about the mechanisms of polysemy within the synonymic group ROAD and the typologically significant features relevant for the chosen semantic field. It places this paper among other lexical typology studies, that may be used by lexicographers or language learners, as well as serve as a base for further researches in this field.

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